Background: A winding path
After 17 years in luxury hospitality, Portia decided to concerntrate on building her business and brand following the closure of a leading luxury hotel she was working for in 2015. An accredited home stager, she had founded her Philadelphia-based boutique staging company four years earlier as an ode to her formative years in South Africa dreaming of becoming an architect someday. Even though the dream had not materialized, she never stopped pursuing other creative passions as well as building on, and acquiring various skills. Her relentless efforts included enrolling in "Women Build" construction classes, a hands-on six week program offered by Habitat for Humanity that "teaches construction skills to women". Because of the training, Portia is very familiar with many construction tools used in everyday maintenance and basic construction, and also owns a few.
Portia's primary aim is to be a catalyst to sophisticated interiors for the masses who still believe that beautifully decorated spaces are a luxury they cannot afford. She has also decided to parlay her years of experience in luxury hospitality to providing a client-centered service offering that deliberately prioritizes quality over process, an instant value-add in this age of instant gratification.
Style and Process:
Portia believes in creating spaces that are authentic to the desires of each client, taking into consideration the practical uses of the space. The result is usually a welcoming vibe that the occupant looks forward to enjoying at the end of a tough day away. She also does not let the budget become the main determinant of the quality of the finished product. Her love of Flea Markets, careful sorcing, and creative repurposing of furniture she buys from re-sale furniture stores, allow her to truly maximize and stretch resources to create the inviting spaces she strives to deliver.
Additional training, academic background and memberships:
A designated Accredited Staging Professional (ASP®), Portia also has a Bachelor's Degree in Communication and Journalism from Temple University, an Associate Degree in Liberal Arts from Peirce Junior College (now Peirce College), and a Certificate in Interior Design from Temple University. In the 90s, she created, hosted, and co-produced "Focus on Africa", a weekly half-hour talk show on Africa and the African Diaspora aired by Drexel University Television (DUTV-54). She is a former member of the board of the Colonnade Historic Condominiums a former affiliate member of the Greater Philadelphia Association of Realtors (GPAR). She is an active member of the Real Estate Staging Association (RESA), as well a member of the International Association of Home Staging Professionals (IAHSP®).